UK’s Matthew Mitchell signs five-year extension


UK Women’s Basketball Head Coach Matthew Mitchell cheers on his team as the play Miami (OH) in Memorial Coliseum on Tuesday, Nov. 1st, 2009. Photo by Scott Hannigan

The UK women’s basketball team has seen growing success in recent years under head coach Matthew Mitchell. On Thursday, Mitchell was rewarded for his efforts.

According to a UK Athletics news release, the 39-year-old head coach signed a five-year contract extension worth $600,000 annually, plus the opportunity for performance-based incentives.

Mitchell was named the Southeastern Conference Coach of the Year last season while taking his team to the Elite Eight despite being picked to finish 11th in the preseason poll.

UK Athletic Director Mitch Barnhart was happy to keep the Mitchell family in Lexington.

“We are excited to ensure that Matthew and Jenna will be a part of the Wildcat family for many years to come,” Barnhart said in the release. “He has done a remarkable job in creating a culture of passion and competitiveness with a type of class that makes us proud to have him at the University of Kentucky.”

Mitchell is proud of the opportunity given to him and he plans to work hard in upcoming seasons.

“Jenna (Mitchell’s wife) and I are very grateful to Dr. (Lee) Todd and Mr. Barnhart for giving me an opportunity to coach at the University of Kentucky,” Mitchell said in the release. “I can’t think of a better place in the country to coach women’s basketball. I feel this is a sign that they are confident in the direction of this program.”

In his first three seasons as head coach, Mitchell has led UK to 63-40 overall, including a school-record 28-win season last year. Mitchell is now in his fourth season at UK and has the UK women’s basketball team off to a 2-0 start.

“Kentucky is our home and we are excited for the future,” Mitchell said in the release. “(We) are looking forward to many more years in Lexington.”